LUZERNE — Police charged a man they allege sold counterfeit bars and coins of gold and silver, receiving $12,655 from two buyers for the bogus metals.
David Steele, 42, of Charles Street, was found hiding with 15 heroin packets in a large cabinet inside his residence on Friday, police said.
Steele was taken to the Luzerne County Correctional Facility, where police allege $330 was found hidden in his rectum.
Police charged Steele with two counts of theft and one count each of resisting arrest, possession of a controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia. He is scheduled to be arraigned on April 25.
According to the criminal complaint and search warrant:
Johnathan Luckenbaugh and his brother, Justin, contacted police on Friday, saying they purchased more than $12,000 worth of gold and silver coins and bars from Steele from January to April 11. The first purchase was made through a Craigs List advertisement with the remaining purchases conducted at Steele’s residence.
Luckenbaugh and his brother became concerned when they noticed no serial numbers on the gold and silver bars.
Police served a search warrant at Steele’s residence Friday night.
Steele was seen looking out a window and turned out all the lights. Police entered his residence and found him hiding in a large cabinet with 15 heroin packets, the complaint says.
Police said they recovered counterfeit gold and silver bars and coins and drug paraphernalia inside the residence.
A search warrant receipt says police seized folders and files listing information for customers who had purchased counterfeit metals from Steele’s residence.
A receipt with Luckenbaugh’s name was found on a computer inside the residence, police said.
Court records say Steele was sentenced on April 20, 2012, to a combined one year probation on charges he trespassed on a neighbor’s property and attempted to cash a fraudulent check using another man’s name.